KAMPALA, 18 February 2021 – Military authorities in Uganda have decried the beating of journalists by military police, saying the act was neither justified nor sanctioned.
Uganda’s army chief, Gen. David Muhoozi promised during a press briefing at the army headquarters that the army will pay the bills of the journalists.
The six reporters injured in the beating were assaulted outside the United Nations Human Rights office where they covering opposition MP and former presidential aspirant, Bobi Wine, deliver a petition on human rights.
The United Nations, the United States and press freedom organizations like the Committee to Protect Journalists have all denounced the attacks on the press, calling for accountability.
The United Nations called Wednesday for a probe into why the assault happened and action to punish those responsible for authorizing, condoning or perpetrating it.
The army chief said the public will be informed of how the army has held the soldiers involved accountable.
The police has claimed that they were merely dispersing an uncontrolled crowd and it was unfortunate that journalists were injured.
Videos posted on social media platforms show members of the Ugandan military police chasing after journalists and beating them with sticks.
Some of the six journalists injured sustained wounds to the head and are shown bleeding in the videos.
Others had long swollen lines on their backs where they had been hit repeatedly by members of the military police.
Just a week before this incident, the European Union urged the Ugandan government to stop police and military attacks on media professionals, human rights activities, pro-democracy campaigners and opposition politicians.